Beginning January 1, Oregon hunters will be able to kill more cougars. The changes come as conflicts between humans and the big cats are on the rise.
In many parts of Oregon, cougars have begun pushing into populated areas. There has been an uptick in what wildlife officials call “non-hunting mortalities” - situations where cougars are killed because of danger to humans or livestock, or unfortunate run-ins with car fenders.
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife spokeswoman Michelle Dennehy:
Michelle Dennehy: “That non-hunting mortality is a good measure of conflict. That means in some areas conflict is above where we want to see.”
The new regulations will raise Oregon’s cougar-kill quota to 970. That’s a 25-percent increase. But that doesn’t mean that many animals will be killed. For the past three years, hunters haven’t even come close to meeting the statewide limit.
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